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New Skills Needed to Foster M2M/IoT Development

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The rapid growth of Internet of Things (IoT) and Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communications is creating demand for workers with news skills who can engineer new products and analyze the large amounts of data generated by such solutions.

To meet this demand, companies such as Cisco, Intel and General Electric are developing programs to train employees as they develop their own IoT/M2M solutions, according to a recent Washington Post article.

General Electric has set up a software center to train data specialists to advise employees on tasks such collecting and analyzing data from jet engines.

We will have more and more need for people who are a combination of data scientists and operation managers people who have both an understanding of how to use data, how to use analytics, and also an understanding of their own business lines, said Marco Annunziata, GEs chief economist.

Cisco is looking for similar hires, as well as people who can collaborate with workers in industries outside of Cisco to make sure Ciscos networks are supported, said Joseph Bradley, managing director of Ciscos Internet of Things division.

Many diverse groups are coming together to leverage to create IoT solutions, including in-house talent, as well as employees from startups, hardware manufacturers and developers. In some cases the majority of innovation comes from outside the company, Bradley said.

Schools are beginning to develop programs to address this need. The University of California at Berkeleys School of Information last September started a masters degree in information and data science, emphasizing how to process the data collected from sensors and mobile devices, among several skills. Other schools, including Carnegie Mellon University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Columbia University have started similar programs.

Connected World magazine said a lack of M2M/IoT skills and understanding among employees and management represents the biggest roadblock to businesses more broadly embracing IoT. It cited a report that recommended that companies need to learn to co-operate with players across industries, including competitors.TheOctober, 2013 article, Are You Prepared for a Talent War in M2M?, referenced a report from the Economist Intelligence Unit, that said in part:

Companies moving from research to the planning stage need employees who understand the technology underlying the IoT, such as wireless systems, networks and sensors. Once products are in development, sales and marketing employees will need to be able to sell the benefits of the IoT in terms that consumers can understand, and companies will require armies of data scientists to analyse all the sensor-generated information.

Aeris Communications has devoted a considerable amount of effort to developing the skills necessary for successful M2M deployments, offering a full range of M2M communications services in 190 countries across 550 operators, ensuring deployment of reliable, cost-effective network-related services for the needs of its customers. As a pioneer and market leader in M2M and the Internet of Things, has the in-house expertise to offer cellular M2M services optimized for the requirements of machines for connectivity, troubleshooting, billing and more.

To learn more about M2M and Aeris, read the Aeris White Paper, GSM v. CDMA: Technical Comparison of M2M Technologies.

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